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2014 LT Maldives Awards

Jan-30-2014 By Lindsey

Welcome to the 2014 Linara Travel (LT) Maldives Awards

2014 Linara Travel Maldives Award Winner

The LT Maldives Awards recognize the Best of the Best in the Maldives.  With 36 different awards, we go in depth in recognizing the best resorts, people, activities, and food throughout the Maldives.  The Linara Travel team constantly evaluates and stays at resorts.  We have combined our in depth comparative knowledge of each luxury resort with feedback from travelers to create what we feel is the most comprehensive collection of the best the Maldives has to offer!

The LT Maldives Awards are the culmination of:
– Working thousands of hours with resorts and people in the Maldives,
– Evaluating resorts based on our frequent stays and visits to each of them,
– Obtaining feedback from travelers we send to each resort,
– Using over 100 criteria in evaluating resorts.  We take everything into consideration!

We think the LT Maldives Awards are the most prestigious awards given in the Maldives!  The LT Maldives Awards ceremony is about which resorts and people are doing the best job in the Maldives right now and we are excited to announce the 2014 LT Maldives Awards Winners:

Best Maldives Resort

Winner:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  One&Only Reethi Rah
Runner-up:  Cheval Blanc Randheli

Best New Resort
Winner:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Cheval Blanc Randheli


Activities and Experiences

Best Activities
Co-Winners:
One&Only Reethi Rah
Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Shangri-La Villingili

Best House Reef for Snorkeling
Winner:  Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa
Runner-up:  A number of resorts have great house reefs so we don’t think it is possible to accurately pick a 2nd or 3rd place.  Part of the snorkeling experience depends on what you see on a given day.

Best Resorts to Snorkel with Turtles
Winner:  Velaa Private Island (Noonu atoll)
Runner-up:  Cheval Blanc Randheli (Noonu atoll)

Best Surfing Excursions from Luxury Resorts
Winner:  Tropic Surf at Four Seasons Kuda Huraa
Runner-up:  Tropic Surf at Anantara Dhigu
Runner-up:  Six Senses Laamu
Runner-up:  Ayada Maldives

Best Beach Club
Winner:  One&Only Reethi Rah – Unique in the Maldives!

Best Golf Facility
Winner:  Velaa Golf Academy by Jose Maria Olazabal at Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Villingili Golf Course at Shangri-La Villingili

Unique Spa Features
Co-Winners:
Lime Spa at Huvafen Fushi for the Underwater Spa Treatment Rooms
My Blend by Clarins Spa at Velaa Private Island for the Snow Room and Cloud 9 Room
Runner-up:  Lime Spa at Niyama for the 24-hour Spa Treatments

Best Spot to View Stars
Winner:  The Observatory at Soneva Fushi

Best Place to Watch a Movie
Co-Winners:
Jungle Cinema at Gili Lankanfushi
Cinema Paradiso at Soneva Fushi


People
The Best Service Award recognizes resorts that consistently go above and beyond in many different ways for our clients.  To win the Best Service Award a resort has to provide exceptional service across the entire resort.  We review all aspects of service from butlers, to management, to employees in every department.

When it comes to awarding individual people, we don’t believe in ranking people.  Ranking people just seems kind of weird!  We do recognize that certain individuals go to extraordinary lengths to ensure our clients have an amazing trip and for their superb efforts we give awards to each of these individuals!  For categories where individuals win awards, the award winners are not listed in any particular order, they are all co-winners of the award.

Best Service
Winner:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Gili Lankanfushi
Runner-up:  One&Only Reethi Rah

Best Butler
These butlers go above and beyond for our clients.
Co-Winners:
Shifaz Hassan – Gili Lankanfushi
Shaheed Saeed (Ess Ess) – Velaa Private Island
Yasir Suliman – One&Only Reethi Rah

Best General Manager
These General Managers go to extraordinary lengths to ensure our clients have an amazing stay.
Co-Winners:
Mark Hehir – One&Only Reethi Rah
Marco Den Ouden – Huvafen Fushi
Chris Ely – Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
Julian Moore – Park Hyatt Maldives Hadahaa
Hans Cauchi – Velaa Private Island
Marteyne van Well – Six Senses Laamu

Best Director of Sales
These individuals routinely approve special requests such as room upgrades, best room locations, special rates, and special amenities for our clients.
Co-Winners:
Narelle McDougall – Anantara and Per Aquum Resorts
Alan Ball – Six Senses Laamu
Janice Tan – Velaa Private Island
Roberto Arganese – Gili Lankanfushi
Scott leRoi – One&Only Reethi Rah

Best Chef
Co-Winners:
Ken Gundu – Niyama
Gaushan De Silva – Velaa Private Island

Best Airport Greeters
Co-Winners:
Shaggy – Huvafen Fushi
Abcy – Velaa Private Island


Rooms

Best Villas
Winner:  Cheval Blanc Randheli
Runner-up:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Jumeirah Dhevanafushi

Best Freestanding Overwater Villa
Winner:  The Private Reserve at Gili Lankanfushi – At 15,000 sq. ft. it is the largest overwater villa in the World.
Runner-up:  The Romantic Pool Residence at Velaa Private Island – At 6,700 sq. ft. in total space it is the largest one-bedroom overwater villa.
Tied for third:  Crusoe Residence Villas at Gili Lankanfushi and the Lagoon Suites at Jumeirah Vittaveli.

Best Multi-Bedroom Overwater Villas
Co-Winners:
Ocean Pavilion at Huvafen Fushi (2 bedrooms)
Ocean Pool House at Velaa Private Island (2 bedrooms)
Two-Bedroom Overwater Pool Residence at Anantara Kihavah
The Private Reserve at Gili Lankanfushi (3/4 bedrooms)

Best Multi-Bedroom Beach Villas
Co-Winners:
Cheval Blanc Randheli (2 bedrooms)
Velaa Private Island (2 and 4 bedrooms)
Soneva Fushi (2 to 8 bedrooms)

Largest Bathtubs
Winner:  Jumeirah Dhevanafushi
Runner-up:  Coco Bodu Hithi

Best Live-aboard Boat/Yacht (for diving, cruising, or surfing)
Winner:  Dhaainkan’baa
Runner-up: Dhoni Stella
Runner-up:  Four Seasons Explorer


Food and Beverage

Best Food
Winner:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  One&Only Reethi Rah
Runner-up:  Gili Lankanfushi

Best Fine Dining Restaurant
Winner:  Aragu Restaurant at Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Le 1947 Restaurant at Cheval Blanc Randheli

Best Underwater Restaurant/Bar
Winner:  Sea Restaurant at Anantara Kihavah Villas
Runner-up:  Ithaa Restaurant at Conrad Maldives
Runner-up:  Subsix Bar at Niyama

Best Lunch Spots
Winner:  Raw Restaurant at Huvafen Fushi
Runner-up:  Teppanyaki Grill in the Tavaru Tower at Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Organic Vegetable Garden Lunch with Private Chef at Gili Lankanfushi

Best Feet-in-the-Sand Restaurant
Winner:  Tribal at Niyama
Runner-up:  Chef’s Garden Restaurant at One&Only Reethi Rah

Best Organic Vegetable Garden
Winner:  Gili Lankanfushi
Runner-up:  Soneva Fushi
Runner-up:  Six Senses Laamu

Best Dessert Bars
Winner:  Ice Cream and Chocolate Studio at Six Senses Laamu
Runner-up:  Chocolate and Dessert Rooms at Soneva Fushi

Best Wine Cellar/Tower/Room/Bar
Winner:  Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Gili Lankanfushi
Runner-up:  Huvafen Fushi
Honorable Mention:  Soneva Fushi, Six Senses Laamu, Conrad Maldives, Coco Bodu Hithi, One&Only Reethi Rah

Best Sunset Drink Experience
Winner:  Champagne Dhoni Cruise at Huvafen Fushi
Runner-up:  Edge Bar at Niyama
Runner-up:  Any sunset facing beach in the Maldives with a cocktail in one hand and love of your life in the other

Best Cooking School/Classes
Winner:  Culinary school at One&Only Reethi Rah
Runner-up:  Sushi making class at Gili Lankanfushi
Runner-up:  Thai cooking class at Anantara Dhigu/Veli/Naladhu

Best Teppanyaki Restaurant (Teppanyaki is quite popular right now)
Winner:  Teppanyaki Grill in the Tavaru Tower at Velaa Private Island
Runner-up:  Teppanyaki at Tapasake at One&Only Reethi Rah
Runner-up:  Fire at Anantara Kihavah Villas

Best Overpriced Cheeseburger
Winner:  Cheval Blanc Randheli – $83 including taxes.  It is an excellent burger!
Runner-up:  Anantara Kihavah Villas – $61 including taxes.

Best Beer Selection
Disappointingly, no resort received a single vote in this category.  With a worldwide craft beer movement going on, no luxury resort in the Maldives has yet to embrace this movement.  It is something all luxury resorts can improve on.  There are better beers than Heineken and Tiger!

2014 Linara Travel Maldives Awards

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